On-Demand Video

Scopes Trial & Continued Debate Over Science & Religion 2023

  • City:
  • Start Date:2023-12-04 19:00:00
  • End Date:2025-12-04 19:00:00
  • Length:
  • Level:Various
  • Topics:General Practice

$249.00 ["ProPass"]

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Join us for a captivating and intellectually stimulating program as we delve into the historical landmark, the “Scopes Trial,” and its lasting impact on the ongoing debate over the relationship between science and religion. This educational journey is led by two distinguished legal minds, Professor Edward Larson, Esq., and retired Federal Chief Judge John E. Jones, III, Esq.

About the Program: 3 Segments 
First, unlock the Scopes Trial: Discover the dramatic events and legal intricacies surrounding the historic Scopes Trial of 1925. Led by acclaimed historian and legal expert, Professor Edward Larson, Esq., we’ll step back in time to examine the clash between science and religion in a Tennessee courtroom. 

Second, Kitzmiller v. Dover: A Modern Perspective: Former Federal Chief Judge John E. Jones, III, Esq., renowned for his groundbreaking decision in the Kitzmiller v. Dover case, will provide unique insights into the modern legal landscape where issues of science education and the separation of church and state continue to be debated. Gain a deep understanding of the legal principles and precedents that have emerged in the wake of the Scopes Trial and how they apply to the present day.

Third, The Discussion: As if in a Paris salon or Ancient Greek symposium, Professor Larson and Judge Jones go deep into the realm of religion and science. In this segment, they will question each other and answer your questions. 

Why Attend:

  • Learn from the men who wrote the book and the decision. 
  • Earn CLE Credits: This event qualifies for Continuing Legal Education credits in many states, including Washington.
  • Engage in Thought-Provoking Discussions: Join in discussions that explore the intersection of science, religion, and the law. Exchange ideas and perspectives with legal professionals and scholars.

Recorded in December 2023.


Edward Larson Esq.

Ed Larson is the University Professor of History and holds the Hugh and Hazel Darling Chair in Law at Pepperdine University. A graduate of Harvard Law School with a Ph.D. in history from the University of Wisconsin, Larson is a member of the Washington State Bar Association. The author of 16 books and over 100 published articles, he received the Pulitzer Prize in History for his book, Summer for the Gods: The Scopes Trial and America’s Continuing Debate Over Science and Religion. Several of his later books on the Revolutionary Era in American history and the Constitutional Convention deal extensively with late 18th century Pennsylvania including the New York Times bestseller, Franklin and Washington: The Founding Partnership.

John Jones III, (Ret.)

John Jones serves at the 30th President of Dickinson College in Carlisle. He retired as chief judge of the U.S. Middle District of Pennsylvania. He was the 21st judge to sit in the Middle District of Pennsylvania. Former Chief Judge Jones was appointed to his former position by President George W. Bush in February 2002 and was unanimously confirmed by the United States Senate on July 30, 2002. He assumed the position of Chief Judge on June 1, 2020. Judge Jones was born and raised in Schuylkill County, Pennsylvania. He is a graduate of the Mercersburg Academy, Dickinson College, and The Dickinson School of Law of The Pennsylvania State University. In 1980 Judge Jones began his legal career as a law clerk to the President Judge of Schuylkill County, the Honorable Guy A. Bowe. Subsequently, he engaged in the private practice of law in Pottsville, Pennsylvania until the time of his elevation to the federal bench. In November 1994, Pennsylvania Governor-elect Tom Ridge named Judge Jones as a co-chair of his transition team. Subsequently, in May 1995 Governor Ridge nominated Judge Jones to serve as Chairman of the Pennsylvania Liquor Control Board. In 2006 Judge Jones received the Outstanding Alumni Award from the Dickinson School of Law, as well as an honorary doctorate in law and public policy from Dickinson College, where he was recognized as one of the twenty five most influential graduates in the College’s over two hundred and forty year history. In 2009, the College’s faculty voted to induct Judge Jones into its Phi Beta Kappa chapter. In 2007 he received an honorary doctorate in law from Muhlenberg College. In May 2006 Judge Jones was named by Time Magazine as one of its Time 100, the one hundred most influential people in the world. Judge Jones has also received a Rave Award for Policy from Wired Magazine. In 2006 Judge Jones was the recipient of the first John Marshall Judicial Independence Award, given by the Pennsylvania Bar Association. In 2009 Judge Jones was the recipient of the Geological Society of America’s 2009 President’s Medal, and in the same year he was inducted into the George Washington Spirit Society. In 2005 the Supreme Court of Pennsylvania appointed Judge Jones to the Pennsylvania Commission on Judicial Independence, and in 2015 he was named co-chair of the Commission by Chief Justice Thomas Saylor. In 2013 Chief Justice John Roberts appointed Judge Jones to the Committee on Judicial Security, a standing committee of the Judicial Conference of the United States, and in 2018 the Chief Justice appointed Judge Jones to the Committee on Space and Facilities. He is a former member of the Board of Regents of the Mercersburg Academy. He has served as an adjunct professor of law at The Penn State Dickinson School of Law. As Chief Judge, he has presided over a number of noteworthy and high profile cases. In 2003 Chief Judge Jones struck down portions of Shippensburg University’s speech code on the basis that they violated the First Amendment’s free speech guarantee. In that same year Chief Judge Jones ruled, in a decision later affirmed by the United States Supreme Court, that the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s statute assessing milk producers in order to fund advertising, including the Milk Mustache/got milk® campaign did not infringe the free speech rights of the producers. In 2005 Chief Judge Jones presided over the landmark case of Kitzmiller v. Dover School District, after which he held that it was unconstitutional to teach intelligent design within a public school science curriculum. In 2006 he ruled that the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania’s ballot access procedures for minor political parties did not violate the Constitution. In 2014 Judge Jones resolved the matter of Whitewood v. Wolf by striking down as unconstitutional Pennsylvania’s ban on same-sex marriage. In 2007 Chief Judge Jones and the Kitzmiller case were featured in the two-hour Nova special “Judgment Day: Intelligent Design on Trial,” televised nationally by PBS. In April 2008 “Judgment Day” won a Peabody Award, which is the oldest and most distinguished honor in electronic media. Chief Judge Jones has also appeared as a guest on national television shows and networks such as Today on NBC, the NewsHour on PBS, C-SPAN’s America & The Courts, CNN, Al Jazeera America, and locally on the Pennsylvania Cable Network. 

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